Equine Fly/Tick Spot Treatments- yay or nay?

I have a Warmblood yearling who the last two days I have spent picking ticks off of (4 so far).
Where I come from I would maybe see 1 or 2 ticks a season. Now I am in Alabama and cannot believe how bad they are!

I have a feeling he is going to get really tired of me picking around his face so I want to know if anyone here has used the spot-on treatments (Celebration, EquiSpot, etc.) on their horses?

Success or not?

Or if you didn’t use spot-on treatments, what do you use to keep the ticks at bay?

Decades ago they came out with some gel you spread from poll to tail and it kept ticks, lice and for a while flies away.

We never did use it, but we saw some burn horses from where that sat on their skin.

Ask your vet, he knows your horse and can tell you what is working best where you are.

For our horses here, our vet had us dust them with a powder we use in cattle dust bags.
That was years ago.
I would not use anything like that without your vet telling you it is ok.
There may be something better out there that is safer for your horses.

Got some tick spot treatments for my horse last year (forgot which ones, have to look itup and get it again) and my horse did not have a single tick found all summer. AND he lives in Connecticut. So, you do the math!:winkgrin:

I tried a couple of the spot-on brands, and they sort of worked, but not for the time period they were touting. IIRC, you put a dab on 7 places. However, it really bothered a couple of my horses–they rolled and rolled trying to get it off, and wouldn’t let me near them to wash it off. (From that, I would advise you to use a halter and a lead rope, and do only one spot, then wait to see the reaction before you went whole hog.)

ETA: Ticks are rare in my area, but one of the dogs came in with one on his neck. After dithering around about pulling it off him and breaking the tick in half if I didn’t do it right, I dabbed a bit of fly/tick spray on a Q-tip & smeared it on the tick. Tick DIED, DIED, DIED.

Equispot did nothing for the horses here. Spray on frontline worked well, but is a bit pricey. Permethrin-based fly spray also works very effectively. I got a bottle of permethrin at Tractor Supply on sale for $10 and it lasted all summer long for 10 horses (it was concentrated, you dilute it). So that’s the cheapest, most effective answer.

I’ve got people here who use Equi-Spot or equivalent and SWEAR by it. They say it keeps the ticks off, but who knows? As for flies, we use Spalding Fly Predators which cut pesticide use of all kinds down to nearly nothing for my guys; just a spritz of Flysect Citronella and they’re good to go even on the worst summer days. It takes a few years for the Predators to really make inroads, but they’re the most cost-effective thing I’ve found.

I have had good luck with Freedom 45 (same stuff as Equispot but different manufacturer), BUT it definitely causes some sort of unpleasant feeling to my mare, because she really hates having it put on and for the first few minutes afterward. In fact, it’s one of the only situations where I need to worry about her kicking out; she just does. not. kick. people (other horses are another matter! In fact, the only times she’s kicked a person have been when they were in between her and a horse she was kicking out at. And even that is rare.) Some horses have an even stronger reaction so a “spot test” is definitely worthwhile.

I’ve used Equi-Spot and Freedom 45, and both work in terms of repelling ticks. I don’t think they do much for flies. I have also had horses get welts from the spot-ons, but a day of welts beats lyme disease, so i give them some extra treats and we all deal with it.

I use Equi-Spot about every three weeks in tick season, which has been all year long for the past two years here. It works pretty well. As soon as I start seeing ticks again, I reapply. I’ve never had any horse have any reaction to it.

I had the exact same experience. I did notice less ticks when I used them, but all of my horses seemed very irritated to the point of painfulness immediately after application. I tried the EquiSpot, Freedom 45, and Celebration brands; all brands produced the same dramatic reaction during application. They never showed any damage or reaction at the skin level where it was applied, but they would roll, buck, kick, and try to bite at the areas like it was burning them. It just wasn’t worth it to keep up with something that seemed to cause them so much discomfort.

I’ve used Freedom 45 in the past and it worked ok. Now I use permethrin diluted in a bucket of water and I sponge it on the horses to get full coverage. That works great especially since they were in areas that were surrounded by creeks and tall grass. Plus it’s so much cheaper and it will last you all season.